The execution of innocent teenager George Stinney

George Junius Stinney Jr. (October 21, 1929 - June 16, 1944)

George Junius Stinney Jr. (October 21, 1929 - June 16, 1944) was a young African American who, in a flawed trial, was sentenced to 14 years for murder in 1944 in his hometown of Alcolu, Carolina. South. He was the youngest person in the United States in the 20th century to be sentenced to death and executed. [1]

Stinney was convicted in 1944 in a one-day trial [2] for the first degree murder of two white girls: Betty June Binnicker, 11, and Mary Emma Thames, 8. After being arrested, Stinney reportedly confessed to the crime. [3] [4] There was no written account of his confession other than notes provided by a deputy investigator [5], and no transcript of the brief trial. He was executed in an electric chair.

Since Stinney's conviction and execution, the issue of his guilt, the validity of his reported confession, and the legal process leading to his execution have been widely criticized. [6]

A group of lawyers and activists investigated the Stinney case on behalf of his family. In 2013, the family requested a new trial. On December 17, 2014, his conviction was posthumously overturned 70 years after his execution, because the circuit court judge ruled that he had not received a fair trial; he had no effective defense and his Sixth Amendment rights had been violated. [7] [8] The judgment noted that while Stinney may in fact have committed the crime, the prosecution and the trial were fundamentally flawed.

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Source: For The People SC

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